An electric car being charged, via PAAn electric car being charged, via PA


Manufacturers are taking axe to prices of EVs in bid to woo transition-shy public

  • Thousands of pounds are being cut off the prices of new EVs
  • Manufacturers facing double whammy, says Auto Trader
  • Consumer demand has softened as brands grapple with ZEV mandate

Time 8:16 am, May 7, 2024

Prices of new electric cars are being slashed by up to a fifth as manufacturers desperately try to offload stock on a wary public in the face of the punishing ZEV mandate.

That’s according to Auto Trader, whose commercial director Ian Plummer was quoted by The Times as saying: ‘The discounts seen in the new electric vehicle market over the past 12 months have been driven by a softening in consumer demand, coupled with the introduction of the zero emissions vehicle mandate’.

Plummer added: ‘Lower prices, however, are good news for car buyers. Affordability will be the key to unlocking the mass adoption of electric vehicles.

‘It is encouraging to see an increase in the number of affordable electric vehicles on the market, which we expect to continue, given the plethora of new models headed for the UK from new brands.’

The Honda E is one of the electric cars with the biggest reductions – it now costs £29,600, which 20% less than a year ago.

Meanwhile, the Peugeot E-2008 and the Citroen e-C4 have seen discounts of more than 15% – from £37,000 to £30,000, and from £33,000 to £27,000, respectively.

Popular electric models such as the Vauxhall Corsa-e and Mokka-e are being marketed at discounts of 20 per cent to their advertised retail prices and the Chinese-made MG ZS and MG5 have attracted discounts this spring of 14 per cent.

The price tag for the Ford Mustang Mach-E has dropped by 14% from £63,000 a year ago to £54,000.

And Car Dealer reported last month that Tesla had slashed its prices in a number of major markets in a move that could also have a major knock-on effect on the value of used EVs.

Meanwhile, Stellantis boss Carlos Tavares hit out at the ZEV mandate last month, calling it ‘terrible for the UK’ and threatening to pare back its presence here as a result.

The mandate – introduced in January – means at least 22% of new cars sold by carmakers have to be zero-emission, while for new vans the figure is 10%.

The proportion will be ramped up progressively until 2030 when 80% of new cars and 70% of new vans sold in the UK have to be pure electric. Come 2035 and all new cars and vans sold will have to be emission-free.

Manufacturers falling foul of the rules or don’t make use of flexibilities – such as carrying over allowances from previous years – will have to pay the government £15,000 per polluting vehicle sold above the limits.

About 15% of the new car market is electric – down from the 16.6% it was last year and in 2022.

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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